Also known as the Pasilla Bajio Chilaca, Pasilla pepper, or Chile Negro, this flavorful pepper originates from Mexico. When in its dried format, the chili is called Pasilla chile which is more recognized than when it’s fresh. The Chilaca Mexican pepper grows to 8-10 inches long with a curved, flattened, conical shape and has waxy, wrinkled skin. This pepper can be harvested at multiple stages of maturity, and can surprise your taste buds at its different stages. When young, it has a mild, tangy, floral flavor with heat similar to the Poblano pepper. When it matures, the flavor is a much more earthy, sweeter flavor with raisin-like undertones and subtle, mild heat. If growing this pepper, it will ripen from dark green to a dark brown-black color when mature. You can use these dried Pasilla chiles for grilling, roasting, baking, or to be eaten fresh and added into hot sauces!
Fun Fact: Chilica translates to “old” or “gray hair,” and Pasilla translates to “little raisin” in Spanish. As we mentioned, this pepper is widely known as the Pasilla pepper, but consists of many nicknames like roasted pasilla, pasilla bajio, chiles pasilla, chili pasilla, pasilla bajio pepper, ancho pasilla, and the list go on.